"Cramer, you buried me alive in First Solar (FSLR), what gives?"
"Jim, how could you let me down so badly in SodaStream (SODA)? Now I am being killed because of you."
Yep, these are the type of complaints I have been getting all morning, many of them on Twitter, eager to hold me accountable for two egregious declines -- declines that I directly told you to get out of the way of a very long time ago.
First, let's tackle First Solar, a stock that, once again, is being hammered mercilessly after another hideous quarter. Is it true that at one time I embraced First Solar? Not at one time, in fact, for years. They had the superior model. They had the best product. They were developing into the Intel (INTC) of solar, making mass production of solar modules at a price that was advantageous for all countries that were doling out subsidies for this fabulous form of energy.
But along the way a couple of things happened that were devastating for First Solar. One, the Chinese decided they needed to be big into solar to deal with their endless energy crisis. So they went in with both guns blazing and blew away the margins for everyone. Second, the whole industry got clobbered with the wind down of subsidies from all of the belt tightening countries, especially Spain and Germany, which had been so committed to solar that they were willing to radically overpay for the technology. As good as First Solar might have been in its heyday, don't even for a minute EVER believe that First Solar's product or the whole industry was EVER economic.
That's why more than in September of 2010 I put First Solar in "Mad Money's" Sell Block when it was trading at $138. I wanted everyone out of it, totally and completely, citing these concerns and a radical decline in gross margins. How concerned was I that people might still be in it? Despite my pounding the table at $138 to get out, I went back in last October and made sure that everyone knew that despite the 80-some-odd-point decline from where it was when I first put it in the Sell Block, I was just as concerned about it. People were excited about a large federal government loan, to which I said, "So what? I don't care about it." Some were saying a takeover was in the works. I said that's almost inconceivable. What I knew was that earnings estimates from the perennially bullish analysts were dead wrong. It was a great call. Go back and check it. If you are in First Solar because of me, you are in it on the short side.
SodaStream? You bet I liked it for a trade when things were rolling and they were selling the razors -- the machines -- and the blades -- the cylinders -- like hotcakes. But when we caught almost a double I said enough is enough, this one is too hot for me, take the gain. What can I say? It was a terrific trade. I don't look back and that's been right because machine sales have slowed dramatically. If you listened, you sold.
I make a lot of mistakes, just like all the pros. It's part of the game. But for heaven's sake, when I get it right, I am not asking for thanks, I am asking that you don't blame me for your losses.
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